Taca Sui


Classic Eastern themes—the enormity of historical time, the passing of all physical things, the importance of transmitting culture from generation to generation—pervade the photographs of thirty-two-year-old Chinese artist Taca Sui. A graduate of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing, he is best known for the 2013 project “Odes,” which depicts far-flung landscapes in a manner consonant with the Shi Jing (eleventh to seventh century B.C.), China’s oldest preserved book of poetry—yielding the kind of image-text matchup common in traditional Chinese painting. Taca’s new body of work, “Steles—Huang Yi Project,” records various steles (ancient stone message slabs) previously documented—through diary entries and rubbings—by the eighteenth-century imperial bureaucrat Huang Yi. The crumbling remains that Taca now finds in Henan Province and his native Shangdong Province, where the tablets are often fragmented and usually illegible, enable him to produce hauntingly poignant silver-on-black images of foliage and stone, those timeless Asian emblems of ephemerality and endurance. —Richard Vine


Pictured: Taca Sui: Wen River, 2015, archival pigment print on baryta paper, 20¾ by 31½ inches. Courtesy Chambers Fine Art, New York.